"That was what I'd call a great game" - Larry Bird preferred his near quadruple-double performance over his famous 60-point game


Larry Bird was on the cusp of a rare quadruple-double against the Utah Jazz in 1985 but chose not to go back into the game to grab his 10th steal because he had “already done too much damage to them.”

The powerhouse Boston Celtics squared off against the Jazz in February of 1985, and after three quarters with a comfortable 24-point lead, Bird did not re-enter the game despite being one theft away from history.

Bird content with a triple-double

Larry Legend had already notched 30 points, grabbed 12 rebounds, and dished 10 assists, but to him, his 33 minutes were enough, and the dominance he showed spoke for itself.

When asked post-game why he didn’t check himself back into the contest, his response was as cool as it comes.

“What for? I already did enough damage to them,” he said.

Most players would stay on the court as they needed one more steal to accomplish the quadruple-double, but Larry was different.

The performance was not lost on him

Later on that season, Bird was at it again, this time dropping a season-high 60 points on the Atlanta Hawks in an all-time performance.

From calling his shots to trash-talking everyone who cared to listen, many regarded Bird’s 60-point explosion as arguably the best individual performance of his career. To everyone’s surprise, following his big scoring night, Bird claimed his near-quadruple double against the Jazz was a better performance in his eyes.

“Sixty-points is a lot. Don’t get me wrong. I made shots against the Hawks that game I can’t recall making at any other time. It’s not easy to do. But there was a game from a little earlier that season where I had a triple-double and a bunch of steals in around 30 minutes against the Jazz. That had it all. That was what I’d call a great game. If you wanna talk about that one,” he said.

It’s a special kind of luxury to be able to choose from a 60-point outburst to a near quadruple-double as the better performance for one season, but Bird was built differently and obviously valued the all-around game more than purely putting the ball in the basket.

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